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Full text of "Poland Russia and Great Britain 1941-1945"

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The newly-appointed Prime Minister explained his Government's
programme in the broadcast to his homeland on December 7, and in his
speech at the meeting of the National Council in London :—
'c ... In the first years of occupation, we had to face not only the disasters
of our own country., but also the crushing might of the enemy and often the
misfortunes of our Allies. The enemy who occupied our country aimed at
our biological extermination., murdering thousands and millions of Polish
citizens or confining them in concentration camps. But despite all this, we
endured, we grew in strength, and we built up the framework of our Under-
ground State and our Home Army, until at last we became a power which
could exert a successful influence on conditions in Poland . . .
" Perhaps never before in the history of the Polish nation have those who
direct its policy faced a situation so difficult and laden with consequences as
we do to-day. It is not only the independence of our State but also the very
existence of our nation which are in the balance. Poland is not only a
coloured spot on the map, not only a group of people speaking the same
language, and not only a state organisation registered in international
treaties. She is a clearly defined factor in European civilisation and culture.
Ten centuries of unbroken historical continuity., and the work and struggle
of over thirty generations have gone to make up the essence of what we
mean when we say—Polish. That quality which had made the Poles the
champions of freedom and democracy can endure and develop to the benefit
of its own people and others only in independence, or, if it is menaced, in all
the forms of struggle open to it ...
" Owing to reasons for which we are not responsible, Poland;, that first and
most loyal Ally amongst the United Nations, has found herself in a very
dirncult situation. Our record is so clean in this war that we may be pre-
sented to all as a model of loyalty, and devotion to the common cause. We have
kept our word . . . We have made immense contributions (discounting
bloodshed and sacrifices) to the Allies' struggle against German aggression
both in the military field and in our resistance to the invader occupying our
land. We held up the attacking German war-machine for eight months.
Over five million Polish citizens have lost their lives as a result of military
operations and the terror raging during the occupation. We are fighting
Germany on all fronts in this greatest of world wars, and we are resisting
without cessation in Poland itself. The best testimony to this is the Warsaw
rising, which broke out in August this year. It lasted sixty-three days and
was one of the most magnificent fights for freedom which this war, and the
history of the world., has ever seen . . .
" There may be differences of opinion as to reality; one may allow one-
self to be influenced by suggestions that material strength alone is the deter-
mining test of reality. But to us,, that essential genuine will of the Polish
nation which speaks to us to-day even from under the ruins and ashes of
Warsaw, is also a reality. We hear this voice of our country, as the world
heard it when our fighting capital shook the world's conscience to its depths.
For all those two long months of the battle in Warsaw, no-one could conceal
the fact that Poland was really fighting with self-sacrifice for her freedom
and for the freedom of the world . . . Our principal goal is, we consider, to
preserve and bequeath to our nation the independent Polish State . . .
" We wish to reach this goal in joint endeavour with our Allies, by the
total defeat of Germany, against whom we have fought since 1939 in Poland
and on all the Allied fronts, and by an honest understanding with Russia.
Our next aim we consider to be the reconstruction of Poland from her ruins
to a new life, based on full political democracy and on just social foundations,